7 Actors Who Practically Became the Character They Played

Some actors have given life to memorable characters, fathers and at the same time children of a test in which identification plays a fundamental role. This process of identification between actor and character has delivered to posterity acting tests out of the ordinary but above all an indelible mark in the life of the actors: a part to stick with for the rest of his career. Some of these are recognized solely through the character to whom they have lent a face and soul, others even take the same name as their film double for a process in which actor and character are no longer separated. An example? Johnny Depp has often stated that he really appreciates it if the crowd cheers him as Jack Sparrow and not the “simple” Johnny Depp.

The legendary captain of the Pirates of the Caribbean saga is the most iconic role to which Johnny Depp lent himself. It was the American actor himself who created his alter ego out of nothing, a bizarre man to whom Johnny gave, among other things, a swaying step and a sly gaze without having read any script before. Another great example of strong identification between actor and character concerns the great Heath Ledger and the role that probably contributed to his loneliness: he joker. To better render the character of Batman’s main enemy, Ledger locked himself in a motel room for six months to work on the personality and psychology of the character. Are you ready to know more stories like this?

Today we introduce you to 7 actors who, like Johnny Depp, have practically become the character they played:

Samuel L. Jackson – Jules Winnfield

Samuel Jackson in Pulp Fiction(640×360)

I was born between the nineties and 2000, in the era in which Pulp Fiction bore the label of ‘movies to watch at least once in a lifetime‘. In the large panorama of high-level characters within the film, he certainly stood out Jules Winnfield, the iconic role for which Samuel Jackson was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Jules is the man who works in Wallace’s gang, in Los Angeles, and is in charge of recovering from the latter the very famous and mysterious black suitcase from Pulp Fiction. The scenes in which Samuel Jackson and John Travolta have to face the four men holding the suitcase have entered the collective imagination as a work of cinematic art. Jules and his classic bible verse referring to the tyranny of men is Samuel Jackson’s own favorite part, who is remembered today above all for his role in Pulp Fiction. Among other things, the role of Jules was initially to be assigned to Laurence Fishburne but the actor refused before the script. A few years later it was revealed that when Samuel L. Jackson showed up for rehearsal, everyone knew he was perfect for the part of him: he sipped his milkshake while eating a hamburger. He ambiguous character just like Jules.

Bill Murray – Hunter Thompson

Hunter Thompson is the journalist responsible for creating a type of writing that combines the conventional journalism to personal impressions to produce a subjective and non-objective point of view on a given situation: il gonzo  journalism. Bill Murray had to play the American writer in an old and dated but not forgotten film: Where the Buffalo Roam. The film describes Thompson’s rise and fame through the articles that the same journalist wrote in the period of maximum artistic awareness. Murray’s performance has been praised by critics and audiences, not only for the character resemblance brought on stage by the actor, but above all for a series of facial expressions that recalled in all respects the creator of gonzo journalism. The one in Where the Buffalo Roam remains one of the most striking cases in which the identification between character and actor plays the leading role.

Johnny Depp – Jack Sparrow

Pirates of the Caribbean
Jack Sparrow(640×360)

Johnny Depp created the character based on the personality of guitarist Keith Richards, founding member of the Rolling Stones. Initially he was supposed to be a minor character but he was hugely adored by the writers and director especially for the interpretation of Johnny Depp and so the character of Jack was rewritten becoming the protagonist. Today the famous captain has become a cult and an icon for the modern world, so much so that every year he is the object and subject of numerous cosplays and reincarnations. The look of the character was chosen by Johnny Depp himself, for example the gold teeth belong to the actor while the famous leather hat was added by Johnny Depp to distinguish Jack Sparrow from the other characters. Today the interpreter of Edward Scissorhands is often seen with the costume worn within the saga to demonstrate, as he himself said, how much his soul is linked to that of Jack Sparrow: light, funny, unconventional and irreverent. We need more Jack Sparrow in life.

Another actor who, like Johnny Depp, became the character he played: Henry Cavill – Geralt of Rivia

Henry Cavill as Geralt of Rivia(640×360)

The third season of The Witcher will be the last in which Geralt of Rivia will be played by Henry Cavill: the actor will be replaced by Liam Hemsworth. It is not known what prompted Cavill to leave the production of one of the most important fantasy projects in recent years, but the loss is serious and difficult to digest. Henry Cavill had managed to bring to life the character of The Witcher known through video games thanks to meticulous and even painstaking work. In one of the very first post-debut interviews of the series, Cavill said that he has played all the Witcher games, proving he was the number one fan of the character he would play. Geralt of Rivia is a man with a complex personality, a witcher from whom most of his emotions are extirpated to maintain neutrality and balance in his work: killing for money. Henry Cavill not only managed to thoroughly investigate the character of the character but also to be incredibly similar, in physical appearance, to his stunt double: gaze of ice and similar to those of a feline.

Robert Dawney Jr. – Iron Man

iron man(640×360)

When I started seeing Marvel movies I was 9 years old and I was just over a meter tall. Iron Man was the first film of this beautiful journey to which I am still attached today and the character played by Robert Dawney Junior has always been one of my favorites. A few years later, whenever I saw the actor in another film, I asked my mother: Why is Iron Man there? Per me Robert Dawney Jr. era Iron Man and viceversa. Thanks to this iconic role he gained international attention and for three consecutive years, from 2012 to 2015, he was at the top of the list of Forbes among the highest paid actors in the world, with an estimate of around 80 million dollars between June 2014 and June 2015. The actor’s career was certainly not limited to the role of Iron Man but his enormous weight within the of a large audience, made up of all those people who had loved comics where Iron Man was just a hero on a piece of paper.

Heath Ledger – Joker

Joker in one of the most famous scenes of the Dark Knight(640×360)

The Dark Knight is the last film in which the world saw evidence of Heath Ledger: the actor would have disappeared shortly after the filming of the film due to drug poisoning. The actor still received the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor: only a posthumous recognition for one of the most important tests in the history of cinema. The Joker represented by Heath Ledger was a very different character from the one already played by Jack Nicholson in the 90s, a crazier and completely out of control spirit. Ledger himself declared in an interview with the New York Times how exhausting it was to play Joker, a test that had taken away a lot of mental and mental energy. A few months after the disappearance it was discovered, in fact, that the actor self-isolated for two months in a hotel room without hearing or seeing anyone, keeping only a diary in which playing cards and very violent movie houses were later found. . A real agony for the role that will later be labeled as cursed.

Leonard Nimoy – Spock

Star Trek is undoubtedly one of the most prolific and beloved series in serial history. The series did not immediately enjoy great success with the public: only later, also thanks to the passion of the fans, did it become a cult and a phenomenon of custom. Among the most popular characters within the series there is certainly Spock, played in the classic series and in the films connected to it by Leonard Nimoy. Considered a true icon of the franchise, Over time Spock has become a point of reference for the entire science fiction genre and popular culture in general. Leonard Nimoy is appreciated above all as the actor who has best managed to make Spock a character of excellence, the one who, thanks to his volcanic phlegm and his Vulcan salute, has managed to earn himself a place of honor in the best performances in a genre sci-fi. Nimoy has appeared since the pilot episode in the 60s and later also in the eight films related to the classic series: a real workaholic job.

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